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macjiger

Stumped...?

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I have been fishing in my favorite pond all year long, starting in late april when the snow melted. I would catch an average of 5 to 10 fish per outing which was about 5 hours. I typically use spinnerbaits and crank baits. I have slowly started to realize that my catches have decreased as the year has gone on. I went out today, at 5:30, and fished all morning up and down the shoreline and got nothing. I saw one largemouth swimming far away into deeper water but that was it. On our way back to the boat launch  we stopped to take a swim.  We passed a little pier type thing so I decided to make a few casts with a senko. I ended up catching two small smallmouth, but 2 fish in 8 hours is not what I consider productive. what should I be doing differently? The pond doesn't the same as it used to be. It hasn't just happened once, rather a dozen times or so.

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How big is this pond?  Acre-wise?  

Look for weedbeds on flats next to deeper water. Also look for ledges and humps and any other sort of structure you can find. This time of year most bass go deep in ponds because the water is cooler and has more oxygen-especially around weeds. Stucture and shade are the keys.

I'd try that and then if that doesn't work, try downsizing your offerings.

Most ponds I fish have a rock stair step ledge that goes either all the way around or partially around the pond.

Chances are, if it is a fairly big pond, say 30+acres, your not fishing where the fish are.  

This time of year I like to go with purely natural baits.  Throw what the fish are eating.  If there's alot of blue gill in the pond, your should be throwing blue gill patterned cranks and spinners.  

If there eating shad, you should be throwing white, or silver lures with black or blue backs.  

If crayfish are the main forage item in that pond, start throwing tubes and baits that imitate craws, like the paca craw, or YUM craw daddy.  

And last but not least, don't keep switching lures every 10 casts thinking they don't want what your throwing.  This time of year, late afternoon is a tough time to fish.  Keep with certain lures aslong as they are appropriate to the area your fishing.  ie...don't throw a shallow diving crankbait in 50 feet of water.  Your just gonna haul water all day.  

Good luck and take a camera so you can post pics in the "My outing" section here on the forum.

Tight lines!!

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Thanks for the replies, The pond is large, well over 100 acres. On one side, there is a rock shoreline that drops off immediately from the bank to about 30 feet of water. how do I get a bait down so quickly? On the other side there is a sandy type bottom with a few rocks and lots of debris like logs and trees, no grass or vegitation what so ever. I spent the day circling around the parimeter of the pond and was unable to find many fish. I mostly used a chart. spinnerbait as well as a bluegill shad rap.

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If you have a drop off like that, I would start by throwing a T-rig softbait or a Jig n craw and work it backup towards the shore at angles.   Working deep to shallow (I mostly shore fish) on drop offs always seems to produce well for me especially with jigs; plus the t-rig and jigs will get your presentation deep pretty quickly.  I would also stick with natural colors this time of year, especially if the water clarity is good.

just my $.02.

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I would focus on the 30' drop:

Hair jig; Silver Buddy; 3/4 oz Ledgebuster Single Willow Blade.

8-)

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I am liking the sound of a jig, but what type of presentation is best for a steep drop? I read somewhere that crank baits can be used in a drop shot, would this work?

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I've had more success swimming a jig on a deep to shallow retrieve with jigs, but your mileage may vary? I'd say try all retrieves until you find what they want since you've already got the location problem out of the way. start with your fastest retrieves first. ie: swimming jig

if you have a baitfish or bluegill colored jig I'd probably throw that one on for the swimming jig, but you may find that a swimming senko or spinnerbait works better after you catch a couple fish on a swimming jig. seems like the biggest fish will come out and pound your swimming jig and then once those couple fish are caught you have to switch. I've had great success with swimming jig, swimming senko, spinnerbaits and roadrunners working in the deep to shallow ledge realm. if they're real finicky you may want to go with a roadrunner in white/silver, a 2.5-3.5" tube or a 4-5" roboworm (or other finesse worm) in a laminated shad color. g'luck!

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One thing you can be sure about. If you were catching fish and now you are not, they are just not there...period. It's all about location. As rw said, try to go deeper. Find bait (using your sonar) and depending on the bottom content, use blade baits, spoons or drop shot.

I love the blades, but this time of the year the darn things hang with weeds far too frequently. The spoon and drop shot have paid off in 30'+ water this year. That's where you should be looking.

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